Thursday, June 5, 2008

Zimbabwe Blocks Charitable Aid

In addition to the issues in Myanmar, blogged here, it appears that charities in Zimbabwe are being hampered in their charitable efforts.  Here is an excerpt from an article in the new York Times describing government orders to NGO's in Zimbabwe to suspend operations:

In recent days, CARE, one of the largest nonprofit groups working in the country, has been ordered by the Zimbabwean government to suspend all its operations, which help 500,000 of the country’s most vulnerable people. This month alone, CARE would have fed more than 110,000 people in schools, orphanages, old-age homes and in various programs, it said.

But the aid restrictions go far beyond any one group. Muktar Farah, deputy head of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in Zimbabwe, said Tuesday that millions of people had lost assistance because of what he called “the shrinking of humanitarian space.”

“NGOs have been told to scale down or stop operations throughout the country,” he said, referring to nongovernmental organizations.

Zimbabwe’s president, Robert Mugabe, speaking on Tuesday at a United Nations food conference in Rome, accused nongovernmental organizations of interfering in politics and contended that the West had conspired “to cripple Zimbabwe’s economy” and bring about “illegal regime change.”

For the entire article, see "In a Crackdown, Zimbabwe Curbs Aid Groups" in the June 4, 2008, New York Times.


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